Top Ten Study Hacks!

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Exercise has been proven to increase both memory and brain power, making it one of the most useful techniques to use when studying and before an important exam. Just a 20 minute walk in the fresh air can improve your performance in an exam.

 

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Steve Jobs once stated “Creativity is just connecting things”. Take a leaf out of his book, and try connecting things and using your creativity to do so. It’s a really useful way of remembering information. One example of this is mind maps, which are a really useful way of creating a bit of a visual reminder of the connection you make.

 

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Get distracted easily? There are apps you can download which will block websites (Facebook for me!) for a certain amount of time, allowing you to concentrate on your studies with no way of getting distracted. Try the ‘SelfControl’ app and see what you think.

 

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Use the Pomodoro Technique! We have a vlog on the subject to help you understand it better, but the basics of this technique are to take breaks from your studies – every 25 minutes have a five minute break. This has been used by millions to increase productivity and creativity, as it gives your brain a small break between digesting a lot of information.

 

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Studies have proven that information retention improves when you vary your study places – so try out a different seat in the library every now and again!

 

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Try to meditate regularly in the weeks or months leading to an exam. Meditation reduces stress and is a stress reducing practice, allowing you to feel more relaxed about exams and retain more information.

 

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Or even just speak out loud! It has been proven that the majority of brains will hold information that has been spoken out loud, rather than read over and over. So educate your friends and remember things more easily.

 

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Get a friend or family member to quiz you on the topics you are revising. This uses the speaking out loud aspect too, and you can assess how much information you have managed to take in, and allows you to become more confident in what you are revising.

 

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It’s really useful to remind yourself during revision what you are studying for. Most things we study for are with an aim to improve our future, so it’s useful to remind yourself of this. Maybe you could buy some post it notes and write down quotes from people who inspire you, and stick them up in your study space?

 

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Exams are a stressful time for all of us, and the worse thing you can do is increase this stress by trying to do all of your revision the day before an exam. Try to make a plan a few months before exam time, and do a little bit of revision each day. This is much less stressful than trying to get it all done in 24 hours!

Relaxation Techniques

Here are Relaxing Records, we want to help you to deal with stress and anxiety and watch it have a positive impact on your life and productivity.

Here we have some top tips to help you deal with stressful situations, enabling you to calm down and destress.

  1. Meditation

    Meditation eases anxiety and focuses the mind. It is an approach to training the ind, as exercise is to training the body. We believe it to be just as, if not more important.

    Meditation can be hard to master as a beginner, but the benefits are more than worth the effort. Once you can train your mind to become empty, you can take yourself away from stressful situations and give yourself time to breathe and destress.

    There are two main types of meditation – concentration and mindfulness. Keep your eyes peeled on a blog discussing both styles next week.

  2. Slow Down

    This may seem like an obvious statement, but the amount of us that don’t give ourselves a chance to take a step back and breathe throughout the day is staggering.

    Sometimes it is more productive to focus on one thing rather than many – and you will actually get things done a lot quicker if you stop multi tasking and learn the art of focusing.

    Every time you start feeling bogged down, take five minutes out of your schedule and focus on the things happening around you. Feel the air on your face, use your senses to smell, hear and touch one thing surrounding you. This will help you become present in the moment and focus on the prioritising the most important of things.

    Check out our vlog on The Pomodoro Technique, a time management ideal which encourages small breaks throughout the day which increase productivity:

  3. Talk to Someone

    More often than not, the important people in our lives – the social circle we surround ourselves with – are the only form of destress we need.

    Don’t take them for granted – reach out and talk to them. Share your stresses, feelings and worries with them and gain an outsiders perspective on what it is that is bothering you. The process of saying it out loud will feel like it is getting it off your chest, and you may find you get some really great advice!

  4. Breathe Deeply

    Breathing is one of the best relaxation techniques. Focusing on your breathing takes your mind of any stresses or worries you may have, and filling your body with more oxygen will reduce levels of stress by slowing your heart rate and blood pressure.

    Slowly inhale through your nose, and exhale through your mouth. While you do this, focus your mind on your breath rising up through your body.

    Check out our blog on breathing techniques for some more information: http://www.relaxingrecords.com/2015/11/20/relaxation-breathing-techniques/

  5. Exercise

    Any kind of exercise, whether walking around the block or running a marathon – releases endorphins (feel good chemicals) to help you destress.

    Exercise will also help you to focus on something other than any problems you may be facing in your life.

  6. Listen to our Music!

    Of course, we will always recommend our own music – but research has shown that listening to relaxing/soothing music can lower your blood pressure, heart rate and anxiety. So what are you waiting for?!